Hello. First I'd like to let you know how glad I am that you have found this Forum. :) I want to be sure you know that we are all CPP (Chronic Pain Patients) and there are no Doctors on this Forum.
I am so sorry that you are experiencing this pain in your knuckles. I know from personal experience just how painful, not to mention annoying this is in just trying to do your normal day to day routine.
Now mine is from Osteoarthritis. My first suggestion would be for you to check with your Doctor and find out what is causing your pain. Until you know that it's a little difficult to make any suggestions as I wouldn't want you to do any more damage to your knuckles. You didn't mention whether you have arthritis in any of your other joints in your body but my first inclination is that this could definitely be arthritis. Especially when you said that if you touch them, bump them, hit them, etc. they hurt, that's exactly what happens with arthritis in my knuckles. The pain just radiates from the knuckle where I hit it. I feel so bad for you as I know how painful it is. Once you get it diagnosed then they will be able to prescribe meds that will help you with your pain and be able to give you the relief that you deserve.
I wish you the very best and will be looking forward to all your updates! ........ Sherry :)
Welcome to the Arthritis Forum. I'm sorry to hear about the pain and limitations you are experiencing.
It sounds to me as if you may have some Arthritis in those joints. However it's possible they are injured (tendons etc) from the hard, trauma inducing work you have done. Most ppl that drive metal fence posts in the ground are not office workers - so I'm doing a bit of assuming.
Your first step should be to consult your PCP and request an x-ray. That can provide a look at possible structure problems. You may require more than a x-ray but it's a starting point.
I don't know a thing about you or your medical background so I'm cautious to suggest OTC (Over the Counter) NSAIDs (Non-steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs). However your Pharmacist should be able to direct you to one that would be best for you. It will help reduce the obvious inflammation in those finger joints. If you don't reduce the inflammation it can badly damage your knuckles (joints).
When using NSAIDs it's important to take enough to be effective and do so continually for awhile. Don't just take a dose once and day - or every other day. NSAIDs need to reach therapeutic levels in your blood stream. Never take them on an empty stomach - and be sure to follow up with your PCP.
Ice can help reduce the swelling but heat often feels better. You can rotate heat and ice - see which one is most effective.
There are over 100 different types of Arthritis. It's my guess you may have one of them.
Please let us hear from you again soon. I'll look forward to your additional comments and updates.
PS - Bidcaller? Are you an Auctioneer? I know - Curiosity killed the cat!
Are the knuckles swollen at all? Your doctor can help you determine if they're osteoarthritic. I've a couple of those and I found chondroitin + glucosamine capsules to provide invaluable relief (however, the swelling did not go down, and continuing vibration abuse re-awakens the pain symptoms).
Research says, it appears that glucosamine and chondroitin, alone or together, are safe and have few side effects. But they cost money and will not help you more than a placebo.
FDA does not regulate supplements. Some are even questionable. I'm all for healthy choices - but be cautious. Never take a supplement without consulting your medical provider. I learned the hard way.
I'm confident that turns out not to be the case (but would welcome seeing a scientific study that suggests it). I was on twice a day anti-inflammatory salve (diclofenac) for my knuckles for a year, and then tried chondroitin and glucosamine capsules [based on my finding an excellent double blind study testing them against a placebo].
I found after merely 2-3 days a serious improvement in pain relief for osteoarthritic knuckles, and was able to drop using my anti-inflammatory salve (except during a few months following, resorting back to it as a bandaid med for a day or two a few times, invariably following periods of vibration abuse in using my fingers -- my damaged knuckles had resulted from excessive keyboarding).
Their cost out to be readily manageable and btw, you can halve the dosage (take twice a day half the amount) after six weeks (that point was part of the study and I found it worked well in practice for me). [eg. Locally, my cost for them would have been $0.20/day during the initial six weeks, and is now $0.10/day.
Their value in pain relief for me has been priceless and I'd greatly prefer to avoid indefinite use of an anti-inflammatory salve (not just for the nuisance but the side effects risk).
I am delighted that you believe glucosamine and chondroitin are effective for you. We live in America and have that liberty.
When glucosamine was first introduced to our market it was hailed as the great new fix it. My mom's physician told her to take it. After six months with absolutely no change or relief her MD advised she stop taking it.
Today the medical community - that I know - are no longer recommending it. That doesn't mean it's bad - I'm not suggesting that at all. For those that believe it helps them - who am I to say it isn't effective - for them?
Unfortunately I don't have the time to search for specific studies regarding it's effectiveness or ineffectiveness - however I do trust the many web-sites that are citing the results of such research.
I tell everyone to consult with their physician before taking any supplement. Why? Because some supplements do not mix well with certain medications or some medical conditions. I've witnessed some nasty reactions. Plus we all have to remember that supplements are not regulated by the FDA. A USP seal may mean a better product - apparently not everyone agrees that's always the case.
In a 2013 ABC New article Dr. David Katz, a board-certified specialist in Preventive Medicine and Public Health at Yale School of Medicine said,
"The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is considering new safety guidelines for some supplements but, for the most part, the industry remains unregulated."
In my opinion it boils down to being cautions and following the advice or your medical provider. I'm not an expert in anything - it's just my opinion based on my medical background.